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For my friend Macka’s birthday I made this ultimate chocolate cake which consists of a chocolate sponge, dark chocolate ganache, chocolate fingers and chocolate roses in milk chocolate, white, red and gold.

For the chocolate sponge I used a Mich Turner recipe from her Cake Masterclass book (thoroughly recommended for great cake recipes and decorating ideas). Her recipe is for a chocolate and cherry cake so I omitted the cherries as the recipe produces a chocolate sponge, perfect for a special occasion. It uses 5 eggs to make the sponge light and a good portion of plain chocolate (min 70% cocoa solids) to satisfy any chocoholic.

Whilst the cake was baking in the oven I made the chocolate roses. For this I went to my local cake decorating suppliers and purchased cocoform (a chocolate paste made from real chocolate and glucose). I used Squires Kitchen cocoform (pictured below)

Squires Kitchen Cocoform
Squires Kitchen Cocoform

For the roses I used between 5-7 petals to produce varying sizes. A lot of guides to making roses start with a cone but I just started with the first petal, wrapping each one round the next, with each petal wrapped more open then the last (for those who haven’t made roses before I will take more photos next time to produce a step by step guide). To make the red and gold roses I used the white chocolate cocoform and sprayed the finished flowers with edible red and gold lustre sprays.

Now I’ll be honest, these took longer to make then the cake took to bake in the oven (especially because I like to wash everything up before starting my next task). So if you’re like me, make sure you allow yourself plenty of time, especially if you’re making it right before your planned event. Luckily for me I had the day off work so was able to work in peace whilst everyone else I knew was at work and not able to distract me.

Whilst the cake was cooling, after a cup of tea and a sneaky stolen chocolate finger, I made the ganache. Now came the messy bit…spreading the ganache and assembling the cake. I used chocolate fingers for Macka’s cake because they’re perfect for dunking in tea (and we are fans of tea!) but chocolate cigerellos would produce a more professional finish. Whilst the ganache was setting I positioned the fingers around the cake then arranged the roses on top. Once everything was finished I popped it in the fridge to set and hold everything in place (not that it lasted long once we arrived and Ed and Macka’s house).